WATSON, Gertrude Louisa

1864 - 1941

As Gertrude Louisa Ford, she was born at Newport, Monmouthshire on 29 October 1864, eldest child of John Ford (1842-11 July 1900), a brass moulder, and his wife Pamela née Bridgett (1842-2 October 1903), who married at St Woolas, Newport on 18 October 1863. In 1881, Gertrude was a 16-year-old pupil teacher, living at 6 Beckett Street, Bilston, Staffordshire with her parents, 39-year-old John and 39-year-old Pamela, with four younger siblings, Alice Maud Mary 15, Roseanna Caroline 12, Edith Furness 3 and brother Harold James 2, all born at Newport. By 1891, Gertrude was a 26-year-old assistant school mistress, boarding at The School House, School Road, Warley, Staffordshire with three other school mistresses, the home of the headmaster, 26-year-old Thomas Olden and his sister. Gertrude married at Wolverhampton, Staffordshire in 1892, Charles Watson (1864-4 October 1928) and they moved to The Board School, Queen Street, Cowlinge, Suffolk. In 1911, Gertrude Watson was a 46-year-old elementary school teacher, still at Cowlinge with her 46-year-old husband Charles, also a schoolteacher, with Charles's 35-year-old sister Elizabeth Watson as their housekeeper. Gertrude became very friendly with Dr Katherine Heanley, who was also an amateur sketcher, who lived at Bigsby's Corner, Saxmundham, Suffolk and they travelled together around Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, painting and sketching. A member of the Ipswich Art Club 1936-1939 exhibiting from 'Hacketts', Saxmundham in 1936, two oils 'Bush Roses' and 'The Rose Bowl' and a watercolour 'Twilight Iris', in 1937 two oil paintings 'Old Adventure' and 'Higgler Hill' and in 1938, one oil, 'Wind Whistle Farm' and two watercolours 'Beccles' and 'Daphne Posing'. In 1939, Gertrude Louisa Watson was a widow and a retired teacher, living at Heatherdene, 35 Ransome Road, Ipswich, where she died on 28 May 1941, aged 76.